I Love You Man
You know what's unfortunate? Sometimes in society brotherly love is looked at as strange. Legitimately, in some communities and cultures it is weird for males to show affection towards each other. I know, when you hear the word affection you MAY hear: mushy touching or obsessive complimenting, but that is not what it means. Affection is a feeling of liking and caring for someone or something. Not "like like" but like. As in, I like being around you. I have brothers that I like, and even love honestly and I have no problem showing that. It took a while for me to get here though.
This whole topic makes me think about my little brother. I remember my freshman year when I was talking to him, who is six years younger than me. I was on the phone with him and I said, “Alright, see you later. I love you.” His response was “…good bye.” Haha. Knowing us now, you would never think we had a hard time sharing love. Neither of us had a father to show us that being a loving male was ok.
Side note: We as guys find it extremely easy to show women love, when sometimes it's our brothers who need it the most. This is because a lot of us grew up without fatherly affection and without recognizing that we actually need that affirmation from our brothers.
Ok, back to my story. Once I made it my mission to become an actual loving big brother, I began doing things like complimenting my brother, correcting him with love, encouraging him and becoming inclusive of the things going on in his life. I started to see a shift. You should see us now, he is usually attacking me with a hug and sometimes spontaneously says “I love you man.” Or when I travel, we’ve told each other—Disclaimer: this is an article discussing why bromance is acceptable and even encouraged-- Or when I travel, we call each other just to talk. This isn’t a thing I only keep with my brother. Whenever my best male friends haven’t seen each other in a while, we tell each other we missed each other and sometimes…we hug. Yes…no dap, just hug. I have a girlfriend and she loves me and I love her. Its not gay or weird. It’s affection and intention. Now I’m not saying that every guy will go to this extent, but my point is to more so be comfortable showing your brothers love.
A story that always captivated me was that of David and Jonathan. They loved each other deeply. If you read 1 Samuel 18:1, you see that Jonathan loved David as his own soul. Not only did they love each other, but they sacrificed and looked out for each other. Ask yourself this question:
Well, are you? Or do you not care about your fellow brothers? Do you not want to see your fellow male succeed? Do you know want to help him grow? Help him build? Wouldn’t you like someone to do that for you? To stand with you when you go through things or would you rather be alone? How much stronger are you with you brothers beside you? Especially when they strengthen you with their love and support. Shout out to all you independent folks who believe you can do everything without help. A support system will always help you supersede what you can do on you own, when you have the right people. As a man show love, it will not only benefit you, but it will teach others. In your environment you are a leader, and being equipped with love makes you powerful.
As iron sharpens iron, so a man sharpens the countenance of his friend.